Cabbage and carrots.
That’s what I was presented with one day last week after driving my kids to and from activities all morning. I hadn’t had a chance to eat lunch and was pretty much starving by the time I arrived home. In fact, on my return ride, I was concocting what I may be able to create for a family lunch with the slim pickings in my fridge. I was ready to pick up a tray of sandwiches or order in a pizza. So, it was a delight to be greeted with a sit down lunch of cabbage and carrots, brilliantly plated in the shape of a colorful sun.
You see, my daughter, who knew we’d be in a quandary for lunch, decided to take it upon herself (with the assistance of her grandmother) to make a beautiful meal. She wasn’t restricted by the lack of choice, instead, the few vegetables in the bin sparked her delicious menu.
As I devoured the perfectly sautéed cabbage, I learned how my mom stood by my daughter’s side, exchanging sweet words of encouragement, while using each other as a sounding board for their preparation. My mother was my daughter’s sous chef, chopping cabbage and cleaning up as they created together.
Although my daughter is often with me in the kitchen, this experience was very different for her. She identified a need and took charge, becoming an independent cook that day. She applied what she had observed and learned into her own style. At only ten, without even knowing it, my daughter had a cooking awakening. It was a true pleasure for me to see my child assert her independence and recognize the value of camaraderie in the kitchen.
And upon listening to us swoon after each delicious bite, she also experienced the satisfaction of knowing that those for whom you cooked really enjoyed the meal. That’s quite a lot for a ten year old.